Comics, Reviews

Nights #4 Advanced Review: As Above, So Below

Ring in 2024 with a new issue of Wyatt Kennedy and Luigi Formisano’s Nights, one of Image Comics’ most promising new series!

Nights 4 Review Cover
Image: Image Comics
By: Javier ReyesMay 31, 2024, 4:05 AM

Nights #4

Review
Rating
9
Good
Nights 4 Comic Cover

Writer: Wyatt Kennedy

Artist: Luigi Formisano

Publisher: Image Comics

Release Date: January 2, 2024

Page Count: 32

Format: Single-issue

In one hell of a jam-packed issue, Nights #4 puts a greater spotlight on Ivory and Matt, two characters we’ve hardly gotten to know but who play vital roles in the grand scheme of the comic’s story.

What better way to start 2024 than with a brand-new issue of one of 2023’s most promising new comics? Nights by Wyatt Kennedy and Luigi Formisano is back, and I couldn’t be more excited to see what’s going on with Vince, Gray, and the rest of the group of peculiar friends. The comic’s first three issues have been a bloody and cozy ride through the strange world of Santo Pedro. What does the fourth issue bring to the story this time around? Tune into my review and find out!

Nights 4 - guy beside carImage: Image Comics

Overview

Everyone living in Vince’s household is having a rough week. Gray is getting violent flashbacks of the past she left behind. Ivory can’t hold down a steady-paying job as a secret assassin. Then, with all the bills piling up, it’s left to Matt to barely hold the house together while struggling with his anxieties about life and death. That leaves Vince caught in the middle of all their problems, on top of his slipping grades. What’s it going to take for things to be normal? Does normal even exist in the streets of Santo Pedro?

Review

In what feels like the comic’s most character-driven issue, Nights #4 puts a greater spotlight on Ivory, Vince’s double-life living cousin, and Matt, the skeleton who’s living out his days until he can move on to the next life. Alongside the storyline with Vince and Gray, a lot is going on in this frantic and fun issue, and it’s only 32 pages long. However, the issue’s quick pacing is a bit of a double-edged sword. As great as it is seeing more of the less-developed characters shine, the jumps from scene to scene teeter on whiplash-inducing. There are some instances where the focus jumps between three different storylines across just two pages. But, as chaotic as that sounds, the storytelling is held together by Wyatt Kennedy’s snappy character writing and Luigi Formisano’s fluid art. 

Nights 4 - girl and boy talkingImage: Image Comics

Even with the focus of the story constantly shifting, the distinct personalities of the characters shine through their dialogue and mannerisms. I walked away from this issue with a greater understanding of the motivations and characteristics of Ivory and Matt, especially. If Gray is the best girl of Nights, then Matt is definitely the best boy. There’s just something so beautifully ironic about the walking and talking skeleton being the character with the most human story amongst the cast. After this one issue of getting to know Ivory, Matt, Vince, and Gray better, I’m hooked more than ever to see each of their unique stories develop and intertwine more as the story moves forward. 

For better or worse, the lore and world-building take a bit of a backseat in this issue, save for some teases sprinkled throughout, so the story can focus more on developing the characters. With all their ups and downs, you get a greater sense of their unique “family” dynamic and how they affect each others’ lives. While some characters have much darker secrets lurking in the shadows (I’m looking at you, Gray and Ivory), this issue more clearly defines the storylines the cast is going through as the series moves closer to wrapping up its first story arc on issue #6. The truth behind the Oddities, Gray’s bloody past, and even Ivory’s “job” will reveal themselves soon enough. In the meantime, this issue is all about getting to know everyone just a little bit better. 

Nights 4 - skull talkingImage: Image Comics

Final Thoughts

I can’t help but be impressed by how many diverse scenes are packed into this single issue. With most of the series thus far being so focused on Vince’s story and his peculiar relationship with Gray, it was great having this issue focus on other characters like Ivory and Matt for a change. As quirky as the cast is, their storylines now feel more naturally intertwined, making the story overall more captivating. While this issue may sometimes feel like its focus can’t sit still, the slick character writing and gorgeous art on display make the comic such a trip to read. By the end of the issue, it’s hard not to feel attached to the whole gang and their odd lives filled with hopes, dreams, and monsters. 

Why You Should Read Nights

  • This character-driven issue does a great job of getting you attached to the comic’s core cast.
  • With such quick and snappy scenes, writer Wyatt Kennedy injects plenty of personality into the characters and dialogue. 
  • The teases to the story’s much darker side are building up to an exciting arc finale.
TAGGED: Image Comics
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